Smoked Two Cigarettes 48 Hours Before BA Surgery is that OK?

Hi! My BA surgery is on Friday at 9AM...48 hours essentially. I am not an occasional smoker but today I smoked two cigarettes and also three cigarettes last week. I am 24 years old, healthy, etc. I did smoke for two years in college but the past five months, I have occasionally smoked while drinking. Over the past week (leading up to my BA), I smoked a total of 8 cigarettes, last Wednesday and then two cigarettes today. Should I cancel my BA surgery on Friday ? Thank you for your help!

Doctor Answers (10)

Smoked two cigarettes 48 hours before BA surgery - is that ok?

Hello! Thank you for your question! The issue with nicotine is that it also acts as a vasoconstrictor, clamping down of blood vessels. Blood supply is always of great concern during any surgical procedure, but especially in such a procedure as breast surgery where the viability of the nipple-areolar complex is obviously important. Since the vascularity to the area is already tenuous since it will be raised by cutting around the area, maximizing blood flow to the tissue is critical.

Typically, we recommend at least 6 weeks of smoking cessation prior to any surgical procedure. Nicotine always increases the risk for infection and wound complications, as well as other health consequences. These couple cigarettes will likely not impact vascularity, but I would discuss this with your surgeon prior to your procedure.  Some surgeons will refuse to operate on smokers due to increased risk of infection, wound complications, scarring issues, blood clots, let alone the pulmonary complications that can occur with general anesthesia and afterwards.  Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Smoking and BA


Fortunately, smoking does not have the same kind of negative impact on a breast augmentation as it does on a breast lift.  So, unless you are having a lift with your BA, you shouldn't be at a significantly higher rate of risks.  I would, of course, advise quitting afterwards.


Hope everything goes well for you.

Thomas Fiala, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Cigarettes and Breast Augmentation


There are only three operations that plastic surgeons refuse to do on smokers: Face Lift, Breast Lift and Tummy Tuck. Smoking affects the safety of anesthesia but 2 cigarettes 48 hrs before a breast augmentation is a non-event. Don't worry, Be Happy!

Lawrence Foster, MD, FACS, FICS

Lawrence Foster, MD
Sacramento Plastic Surgeon
3.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Smoking before Breast Augmentation?


Thank you for the question.

Fortunately, it is very likely that you will do well  with the breast augmentation procedure despite smoking.  This does not necessarily hold true for patients undergoing more extensive surgery such as breast lifting, tummy tuck,  or face lifting surgery.

Of course, best to address this question directly with your plastic surgeon who is also responsible for care.

Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 681 reviews

Smoking in the week prior to breast augmentation


Smoking is clearly not a good thing because it affects wound healing.  Clearly, your pre-op nerves manifested themselves this way!!  I recommend that you contact your plastic surgeon to discuss this because he must decide whether this is within his comfort level, rather than the RealSelf panel.  Best of luck.

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Sad to say, but smoking will not impact your breast augmentation


Smoking is bad, and can impede healing and be a problem for cosmetic procedures, but the lick of it is that the risk of smoking and poblems with breast augmentation are very few. You need not cancel your surgery.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Smoking and Surgery


Any history of smoking increases the risk of poor wound healing prior to surgery.The number of pack years and the proximity to surgery also may have an adverse effect . A young otherwise healthy individual with a small ingestion of tobacco will result in a small increase in the overall risk.

Jay M. Pensler, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Smoking and breast surgery


It is always best to be honest with your plastic surgeon and let him know that you are back to smoking.  He can evaluate the situation and let you know if there is a problem.  One or two cigarettes prior to surgery should not be a major concern.  In general we do not like patients to smoke in the peri-operative period, two weeks before and two weeks after surgery.  It can effect your healing.  No one wants any wound healing problems.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Smoking and Breast Augmentation


Smoking is harmful with respect to blood supply and healing, especially with certain procedures like facelifts and tummy tucks when a thin flap of tissue is created.  Smoking can also cause patients to cough more following anesthesia and this might increase discomfort and the risk of bleeding although I think that risk is quite low.  I assume you have discussed your smoking history with your surgeon but if you have not you should notify him/her tomorrow and make sure this will not be a problem.  

Richard Kofkoff, MD, FACS
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Smoking and plastic surgery


The nicotine in cigarette smoke causes the small blood vessels to decrease in size and this causes a decrease in blood flow. Smoking adds a lot of unnecessary risk in lifting operations, such as face lift, breast lift, tummy tuck. It does more harm after surgery than before. 


However, for a breast augmentation, there is probably no measurable increase in  wound healing risk. 


Cancel you smoking habit, but go ahead with surgery. Best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.